Cal Tuition Passes $10,000 Mark

Board approves 32 percent fee increase

By Olsen Ebright
|  Wednesday, Sep 29, 2010  |  Updated 5:41 PM PDT
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An estimated 500 people protest a proposal to increase tuition.

An estimated 500 people protest a proposal to increase tuition.

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More than a dozen people were arrested at UCLA during heated protests over a two-tiered, 32 percent fee increase.

The University of California Board of Regents committee on Wednesday approved the increase, which would raise tuition to more than $10,000 -- marking the first time tuition would reach a five-digit price tag.

The proposal drew an estimated 500 protestors outside of UCLA's Covel Commons, according to UCLA:

Spectators erupted in chants and shouts several times before Wednesday's vote. The UC Police Department declared an unlawful assembly in the morning and cleared the room of protesters. The disruptions continued after the audience was permitted back inside, leading police to clear the room again.
Before the meeting, protesters formed outside Covel Commons. Signs crafted by employee unions leaned upside-down against planter boxes, with messages such as "Yes, we can take back our university," in preparation for a series of protests.
Students from UCLA and other UC campuses continued to gather as the crowd reached an estimated 500. Police in riot gear lined up to keep the crowd under control.

Fourteen people, including 12 students, were arrested and cited, according to UCLA. Two students suffered minor injuries and "a few UC Police officers were hurt by thrown objects," according to the university.

The proposal would increase tuition at UC campuses by $585 in the spring and an additional $1,344 in the fall. The full Board of Regents will consider the proposed tuition increase Thursday.

"None of us want fee increases," said UCLA Chancellor Gene Block. "This was a painful decision to make, but the Regents have their backs to the wall in trying to restore the fiscal health of the university. Unfortunately, this means that everyone -- faculty, staff and students -- is forced to share the pain. This crisis is truly unprecedented and requires drastic measures. It’s important to note, though, that financial aid packages will close the gap for the most needy."

Some protesters planned to remain at UCLA as part of a 24-hour demonstration, City News Service reported.

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